Market trades rain that may not fall

AgweekTV's Michelle Rook and Randy Martinson of Martinson Ag Risk Management talked about a fall in the markets this week and what's likely coming in the future.

Grains were down across the board this week for a peculiar reason when a good chunk of the country is mired in drought. Markets, AgweekTV's Michelle Rook said, were "trading rain in the 11- to 15-day forecast."

Though conditions in the Northern Plains and the western Corn Belt remain dry and hot and appear to remain so for some time, a glimmer of hope for some rain in the future was the main factor in keeping corn, soybeans and wheat down.

"It seems a little bit suspect or weird," said Randy Martinson of Martinson Ag Risk Management on this week's Gateway Building Systems Agweek Market Wrap.

The belief in the markets, he said, is that yields in the eastern Corn Belt are "going to carry the weight" to make up for problems in the western Corn Belt.

Other factors in the dips in the markets included old crop cancellations of corn, particularly from China. However, Rook and Martinson also discussed problems with the South American crop that may increase the value for U.S. crops.


Wheat decreased somewhat on news of rains in Canada, plus the spread between spring wheat and winter wheat had gotten too large. Winter wheat, Martinson said, is being harvested.

"Some of those yields are coming in better than expected," he said.

Next week's Wheat Quality Council spring wheat tour will tell a lot about the status of the spring wheat crop, though Martinson said there might not be much decent wheat standing by the time the tour arrives.

Cattle and hogs got friendly news this week. For cattle, the cattle on feed report was slightly positive, and both sectors saw low storage rates in the monthly cold storage report. Martinson said the strength of the stock market will be a big factor in the prices in the livestock sector. He also said news of COVID-19 Delta variant infections may play a role.

To watch previous episodes of the Agweek Market Wrap, click here.

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